Growing Fruits can be easy or very hard depending on the climate or the conditions which is fairly obvious, but it is also depending on the Fruit you have decided to grow. Strawberries are faster to grow in the Northen hemisphere than the Southern one for exemple. It all relies on factors and the kind of the Fruit. We have been successful in growing many Berries from Blueberries, Raspberries, Blackberries, Strawberries to name a few.
We have about three varieties of Blueberries which are enjoyed faster by the Birds than ourselves. As soon as they are ripe they are gone. But we do not mind that. Ever since I bought some Blueb's to feed the Birdies.
As for the Strawberries we do get them from April onwards up until Autumn, October time. They are spreaders so it is better to keep them in containers just like Mint. They are easy to grow for they do not need a lot of care. Rain and sunshine that is all they require. Our varieties are mainly the Forest ones (Fraise des Bois), the Wild ones and a variety called Snow White which is white.
The White Strawberries we do grow.
For our Raspeberries, it is an old bush which has never been cut down. It lasted for about twenty years but it is on its last legs now in 2023. We are planning to replace it with new Raspberries varieties during the Autumn. It will probably be Loganberries, Blackberries and Gold Raspberries in that patch along with Glen Ample Raspberries which give a high yielding. The fact that we didn't tend to the ancient bush is because it looked after itself almost but was also a provider of food for the Sparrows but just as well a giver of food for them.
Ripening Rasperries from the Garden. They are awsome to do a Summer Pudding.
Blackberries like Raspberries can be left to their own device. With Mulch upon the bases when they are young, they can survive the Winter just like the Blueberries bush. But if the Blueberry Bush hardly expend itself the Raspberries and Blackberries do so. Therefore especially if they are thorny Varieties it is probably best to keep them at bay which is not what we did because of our Birds population. However if you want to tame the Garden, my advice is to prune them a little in the Winter to allow upward growth rather than them to expend their roots system. It will give the Bushes to put their energy to develop new leaves and then Fruits rather than just the roots.
With our Blackberries, I tend to do some Jam for the Winter on occasion but always leave some for the Sparrows.
I have good memories of foraging for Blackberries with my family. We did get buckets of them on our walks in the countryside lanes and paths. Our Dog Suzy the Dachshund loved those walks because she was always eating the Blackberries which were at the bottom of the bushes. The harvest gave my Mum an opportunity to do about a dozen pots of Blackberry Jam, which we could enjoy during the colder months of the year. It was cheap and cheerful: a good day out and a treat at the end of it.
Suzy, my childhood family Dog. We did love her to bits. She was just such an intelligent and very cool Dog which also loved sunbathing.
After covering the Berries, I will say just a few lines about the Currants: They are rather easy to grow as well, but they do need some protection over Winter. Mulch to cover their roots is my advice. We lost our well established Redcurrant Bush one Winter because of the lack of good protection but also because we grew it behind the pond in area which was hard to access to. Everyone do grow old at some point and physically we couldn't look after that Bush. In indsight it was a bad plan to plant it so far away where there was just a very narrow edge to reach it to tend to it. We did grow Goosberries and Blackcurrants, there too, which unfortunatly had the same fate. So my advice is to make sure, you do keep those and grow Currants where you can attend to them. This was our learning from our mistake moment.
One of our last little harvests of Redcurrants. I used to do Jelly with them for Christmas.
My Partner tried to grow Kiwi plants but if he did choose two nothing came to fruition because they were both female ones. They are large and take a lot of room in the Garden but they will never give any Fruits. They are well established and it will be difficult to remove them. However a sensible solution would be to get a male Kiwi plant to add to the mix. Then may be we will have some results.
The lesson here is to pay attention to the gender of your Kiwi plants.
However I had success with my Lemon Tree. It didn't take much just to plant a pip in a pot and see it grow through the years. But it took time. It started all with a bunter with my Mother who didn't like me to remain in England saying that you couldn't grow Lemon and Oranges there because it was raining all the time and didn't have a fair amount of sunshine. I wanted to proove her wrong. So my Lemon Tree started from scratch. In the year when I published my first book, the Lemon Tree gave me its first Lemon. We are talking there of about roughly fifteen years from the pip to the fruition of it. But I was proud to show up my first Lemon to my Mum as well as my first Novel.
My very first Lemon. It took its time to get one from the tree but from room to flat to house I never gave up. And it showed up fully. Now I have an harvest of about five to ten Lemons a year.
Having success with Lemons I did try my hand with Limes and Mandarins but with different luck and results. For the Lime Trees we tried one from scratch and the other already grown to half a metre. The small one died but the taller one survived and gave us some Limes. As for the Mandarins we didn't have any success at all so I am afraid to say that I am not an expert on growing those.
The label for our Lime Tree which did give us for four years a lot of Limes.